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Cricket in Leamington

ONE OF OUR EARLY ARTICLES As 19th Century Leamington metamorphosed from village into prestigious spa town, and eminent medical men advised exercise in addition to taking the waters, many sports associations sprang up here. Leamington could boast a Real Tennis Club, the first venue for Lawn Tennis (on the site of the present Manor Court […]

The Blue Café

Mrs Margaret Mary Maitland Fowler, sometime owner of Leamington’s famous Blue Café in Bath Street, became something of a Midlands legend in her own lifetime. She was appointed OBE for her services to charity, to disabled ex-servicemen and the Red Cross. Mrs Fowler worked for the Red Cross and fund-raised for charity for most of […]

Early Television in Leamington

  Among a host of anniversaries celebrated in 2016, the thought occurred to me that the date also coincides with eighty years of the first public transmissions of television pictures from Alexandra Palace in London in the Autumn of 1936.   Most people know that the first person to demonstrate a working television was Scotsman John […]

Leamington Spa Breweries – Introduction

While the history of Leamington’s pubs is comprehensively covered in the 2014 publication ‘Pubs of Royal Leamington Spa – Two Centuries of History’ [by Allan Jennings, Martin Ellis & Tom Lewin], we should not overlook the breweries that were once part of Leamington’s social fabric, albeit a great many years ago; their respective histories were […]

Raymond Pullin, Leamington Stonemason

  The best known name for stonemasonry in this area is Pullin.  The business, situated in High Street next to the railway bridge, still bears the Pullin name even though there is no longer a family connection. George Pullin started the business in 1875 in King’s Heath near Birmingham and his son, Charles inherited it.  Charles moved to Leamington […]

Miranda and the Lockheed Festival Fountain

  Lockheed staff magazine ‘Precision’ dated March 1951 reported: The year is 1951 the year of Britain’s great Festival, with British craftsmanship on show to the world in two great sections – the South Bank site on the River Thames at Waterloo Bridge and the 37 acres of Pleasure Gardens at Battersea. An outstanding feature […]

The Wise Hall, St John the Baptist Church

The Wise Hall St John’s Parochial Hall (aka ‘The Wise Hall’)  was built originally by Dr. John Hitchman. It was used by him as a place of worship for people connected with his  Arboretum Hydropathic Hospital which opened close by in 1862.  After the formation of St. John’s Parish in 1875, it was given by Mrs. […]

Irish – Who’s Irish?

My great-great-grandparents were born in County Mayo, Ireland, John Jennings in 1838 at Killadoon, Ballintubber, and Anne in 1844 at Arthavalley, Ballintubber. I think that it is highly likely that the great potato famine after 1845 was the reason that John and Anne’s families decided that they needed to move in order to feed their […]

Josef Kalaś, 1912 – 2008

    Josef Kalaś was born in Czechoslovakia and served in the Czech army before the outbreak of WW2. During the 3rd Reich Occupation, he fled via Poland and joined the French Foreign Legion. He was released to fight with his countrymen at the outbreak of war, and eventually, having survived the last battle to  […]

Women in the Cricket Field

 A trawl through back copies of the Leamington Courier in search of archive material relating to Leamington Cricket Club turned up an intriguing announcement by Mr W A Bezant in the editions of June 1890, – the forthcoming “Engagement, for one day only, of The Original English Lady Cricketers”,  when two complete teams, Reds v. […]